4 Tips For How to Help Your Senior Parents Declutter
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There are many reasons why the elderly should declutter their homes. This, of course, includes preventing unwanted accidents in the home. After all, according to the CDC, home hazards like clutter have become one of the leading causes of falls in the elderly.
Decluttering, however, is a task often easier said than done for the elderly. There are various obstacles that they may have to go through during this time, such as:
- Their reluctance to let go of their belongings.
- Not having enough energy.
- The overwhelming number of items they have.
- Being unsure of where or how exactly to begin the task.
Fortunately, you can do a few things to help make the process of decluttering as easy as possible for your parents. Here they are:
Tips You May Find Useful When Helping Your Senior Parents Declutter
1. Do Not Rush The Process
The process of decluttering can be too much to handle for seniors on their own. This is especially true when they’ve accumulated and grown fond of particular items throughout the years. Thus, being objective while doing the task may not be as easy for them as it would be for us. So, remember to help them start small and start slow. Here are some ways for you to do this:
- Remind them that going through everything in one sitting is not the way to go. Instead, help them set aside 30 minutes to an hour every day just for decluttering.
- Alternatively, rather than an entire room, you may begin with something small like a nightstand or a medicine cabinet. Here are some tips on how to declutter a medicine cabinet.
2. Always Provide Them The Option Of Keeping Items In A Self Storage Facility
During the process, you will find items that are not very useful but hold a lot of sentimental value. Provide them with the option to keep such things in a self storage unit. Doing so will help them clear their house of clutter without having to give up any of the items special to them.
You can even assure them that their stuff will be safe from getting damaged or dirty in storage. After all, most self storage facilities keep their units clean and well-maintained. They also don’t have to worry about theft. These facilities have 24/7 CCTV coverage, state-of-the-art security systems, and efficient security protocols in place.
If self storage is an option for your parents, remember to consider several self storage companies. Compare what several companies can offer to find the best storage deals in the market.
WhatStorage, a self storage comparison site, advises its users, “When looking for the best storage company for you, do not base your entire decision on just price alone. Rather, you should also consider the convenience and the services that a self storage facility can provide for you.”
3. Be There For Them, But Allow Them To Have The Final Say
It goes without saying that they will need your support during this time. After all, decluttering can be a very nostalgic experience for some. However, it is crucial for you always to let them have control.
Let them decide which items they want to dispose of and which items they want to keep. The last thing you want is for them to feel like they have no say over the belongings they value the most.
4. Let Them Know That The Items They Give Up Will Not Necessarily Go Into The Trash
Sometimes, people misinterpret decluttering as a process of merely choosing which items you throw in the trash. However, this is not always the case.
So, let your parents know that their items are not going to waste. They have the choice to donate or sell the things they no longer want or need to keep. You may even ask some family members or friends to take some items for themselves. This will show your elders that their stuff will still be put to use and left in good hands.
While following this guide will make it much easier for your parents, the process may still prove to be long. So, always remember to be patient and show them as much empathy as you can.
These tips should be enough to help you guide them through the task of decluttering. However, if you need a bit more guidance, do not hesitate to follow up with more research on the matter.
Meanwhile, if you are searching for other home safety tips for seniors, check out this article for a good read!